Abstraction is the hidden technique of great solutions, not code

My degree is Industrial Engineering. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Industrial_engineering I found the discipline when I was a freshman in high school sitting in the school library reading about different engineering degrees. My dad was a civil engineer for CalTrans and I was good at Math, Science, and Business. My computer skills were OK, but not as good as my other skills. It is easy to drill into the concrete specifics of Industrial Engineering discipline and I did this in the beginning working on logistics and distribution engineering. Luckily when I left HP to go to Apple is when I got my taste of working on working on software systems and creating new solutions which then let me address my weakness in computer science. This background also supported my moving to Micosoft for years and yeras on Windows.

With the popularity of learning coding skills, many think the key to build Internet Services is code. But when you dig into looking at where the great insights come from it is people who have top abstraction skills. 

A presentation that I found that illustrates the power of abstraction is Scott Shenker’s presentation on the Future of Networking (SDN). https://www.slideshare.net/mobile/martin_casado/sdn-abstractions



It has taken my probability a dozen times looking at the slide deck to absorb the subtle details that Scott shares.  



The conclusion is  



Google shares its observations on Best Practices for AR

AR is a hot topic and Google has a post where they share their observations on best practices.

“From our own explorations, we’ve learned a few things about design patterns that may be useful for creators as they consider mobile AR platforms. For this post, we revisited our learnings from designing for head-mounted displays, mobile virtual reality experiences, and depth-sensing augmented reality applications. First-party apps such as Google Earth VR and Tilt Brush allow users to explore and create with two positionally-tracked controllers. Daydream helped us understand the opportunities and constraints for designing immersive experiences for mobile. Mobile AR introduces a new set of interaction challenges. Our explorations show how we’ve attempted to adapt emerging patterns to address different physical environments and the need to hold the phone throughout an entire application session.”

It’s a good summary of issues that are kind of obvious when you start down the path of building solutions.

Machine Learning (ML) in Google’s Data Center, Jeff Dean shares details

Jeff Dean is one of Google’s amazing staff who works on data centers. He posted a presentation on ML that is here. Who is Jeff Dean? Here is a business insider article on Jeff. If you want a good laugh check out the jokes on Jeff Dean’s capabilities. I’ve been lucky to have a few conversations with Jeff and watched him up close which helps to read the ML presentation.

Below is a small fraction of what is in Jeff’s presentation. It is going to take me a while to digest it, and luckily I shared the presentation with one of my friends who has been getting into ML architecture and we are both looking at ML systems. 

Part of Jeff’s presentation is the application of ML in the data center. 


This slide doesn’t show up until 3/4 through the presentation, and to show you how important this slide is it shows up again in Jeff’s conclusion slide. 



So now that you have seen the end slide what is Jeff trying to do?  Kind of simple he wants a computational power beyond the limits of Intel Processors. Urs Hoelzle wrote a paper on the need for brawny cores to replace the direction for wimpy cores. https://static.googleusercontent.com/media/research.google.com/en//pubs/archive/36448.pdf


So what’s this look like? 



Look at the aisle shot. 


And here is shot of the TPU logic board with 4 TPUs. 


AWS IOT platform will be a new platform for DCIM

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about Implementing DCIM on an IOT Platform. And that the end of DCIM is coming. What I didn’t think about was how quickly things can change and AWS would be at the center of this change.

AWS Re:invent is going on. I have never gone, but have plenty of friends who are there and I can chat with them. What I did do yesterday was watch Andy Jassy’s opening keynote and the best part was the last 15 minutes where Andy covered the AWS IOT Platform. Below are the 8 parts of the platform.

Also I placed a pre-order for an AWS DeepLens

With the AWS Platform the current ways of building DCIM are shown to be in the past. The future is to build DCIM on IOT. All you DCIM vendors get ready to compete against AWS and its partners. This includes Litbit who was trying to do a subset of AWS IOT. Luckily for DCIM vendors AWS IOT is not targeting the DCIM market. AWS IOT is going after the industrial IOT market which is magnitudes bigger. I checked out the vendor list to run their services on at the edge and it is impressive for a start at launch.

AWS IOT is good enough that I am looking to add it to a lab environment to play with it more. 

AWS IoT Services

AWS IoT Core 

AWS IoT Core is a managed cloud platform that lets connected devices easily and securely interact with cloud applications and other devices. IoT Core can support billions of devices and trillions of messages, and can process and route those messages to AWS endpoints and to other devices reliably and securely.

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AWS IoT Device Management 

AWS IoT Device Management is a service that makes it easy to securely onboard, organize, monitor, and remotely manage IoT devices at scale.

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AWS Greengrass

AWS Greengrass is software that lets you run local compute, messaging & data caching for connected devices in a secure way. With AWS Greengrass, connected devices can run AWS Lambda functions, keep device data in sync, and communicate with other devices securely - even when not connected to the Internet.

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AWS IoT Analytics

AWS IoT Analytics is a fully-managed service that makes it easy to run sophisticated analytics on massive volumes of IoT data without having to worry about all the cost and complexity typically required to build your own IoT analytics platform. It is the easiest way to run analytics on IoT data and get insights to make better and more accurate decisions for IoT applications and machine learning use cases.

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Amazon FreeRTOS

Amazon FreeRTOS is an operating system for microcontrollers that makes small, low-power edge devices easy to program, deploy, secure, connect, and manage.

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AWS IoT 1-Click 

AWS IoT 1-Click is a service that makes it easy for simple devices to trigger AWS Lambda functions that execute a specific action. Some examples of possible actions include calling technical support, reordering goods and services, or locking and unlocking doors and windows.

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AWS IoT Button

The AWS IoT Button is a programmable button based on the Amazon Dash Button hardware. This simple Wi-Fi device is easy to configure and designed for developers to get started with AWS IoT CoreAWS LambdaAmazon DynamoDBAmazon SNS, and many other Amazon Web Services without writing device-specific code.

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AWS IoT Device Defender

AWS IoT Device Defender is a fully managed service that helps you secure your fleet of IoT devices. AWS IoT Device Defender continuously audits the security policies associated with your devices to make sure that they aren’t deviating from security best practices. AWS IoT Device Defender also lets you monitor devices for behavior that deviates from what you have defined as appropriate behavior for each device. 

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